Binghamton University’s theater department is kicking off their 2008-09 main stage season with a performance of Wendy MacLeod’s “The House of Yes.”
The play focuses on a family’s Thanksgiving meal interrupted by a hurricane that causes a blackout in the Washington, D.C. area.
Jill Tominosky, the marketing and promotions director for the theater department, stated in an e-mail that, according to MacLeod, its author, the play is a story about “people that have never been said ‘no’ to.”
According to Thomas Kremer, director of the play and a professor in the theater department, he chose the show because he felt it was relevant to today’s social and political climate.
“America has for years been a bit of a ‘House of Yes’ in the sense that we feel that we should be told ‘yes’ to any of our ideas and desires,” Kremer said.
Tickets are currently on sale at the Anderson Center Box Office. General admission tickets are $14, $12 for faculty/staff/seniors and $8 for students. The show will run on Oct. 17, 18, 24, 25 and 26. Performances begin at 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday evenings and at 2 p.m. on Sunday.
Tominosky said the Sunday performance always fills up quickly and that members of the department are expecting a decent turnout.
“Also, it’s a dark, quirky show that will definitely sell tickets by word of mouth,” Tominosky said. “So we are expecting good numbers.”
The students who received lead roles include Kerrin Hawkins as Jackie-O, Matthew Koenig as Marty, Paul Stanton as Anthony, Allie Henkel as Mrs. Pascal and Emma Lunderman as Lesly.
The student actors underwent numerous auditions. According to Kremer, they competed with approximately 100 students who all had to present a one-minute memorized monologue of their choice. Then the competition was reduced to 30 students who were selected for casting consideration, which lasted about four hours. This was then reduced to a smaller group, which was later cut to the five students who were placed into lead roles.
Kremer mentioned that rehearsals are going well and said the actors are working creatively and diligently.
“Most importantly, we are having a great deal of fun while learning about the text and developing our take on it,” Kremer said.
With the show in just a few weeks, everyone involved has been preparing to do their best for the actual performances.
“I expect the students to give professional quality performances and for the audience to have an enjoyable time laughing and being shocked at the actions of the characters in this play,” Kremer said.